services 06.4.07

Green Apple Cleaners

What a fuss Joan Crawford made to her daughter about wire hangers in the closet. "No wire hangers, EVER!"

Ah, Joansie. If you weren't so completely nuts, you'd might have redeemed your stab at motherhood by shouting 'No perchloroethylene' instead. That's the chemical compound (commonly called PERC) used by the vast majority of dry cleaners. It's a nasty bit of business — overexposure can damage the central nervous system, the liver and kidney, and it is considered a probable carcinogen.

Your dry cleaner may claim the PERC problem has been solved with the advent of so-called fourth generation dry cleaning machines. These machines may do a better job of containing vapors, but they still use PERC. As Miss Crawford might have said, "Don't @$%#! with us fellas. This ain't our first time at the rodeo."

In a Consumer Reports test from 2003, they found that a new process, one that uses liquid carbon dioxide, is not only much better for the environment and for you, it actually did a better job of cleaning clothes. (A MUG reader says, "My clothes are somehow rejuvenated by this CO2 process…It is almost bizarre how the fabric of my old blazer looks newer than it has in years.")

And there's now a dry cleaning service in the city that uses the process. It's called Green Apple Cleaners — and they pick up and deliver.

Erin McKeown
100 Words
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